Home Remedies: Natural Solutions to Common Ailments

I got a cold so my post is a little late.

If I can’t take a break for self-care, there wouldn’t be much point in writing about wellness!

With all the panic over the pandemic, I had to do a few lateral flows to justify my cough—As I had thought, it was just a cold.

For most, when signs of a cold arise, the immediate response is to take paracetamol. A medicine for pain, not for boosting the immune system.

There are many natural ways to help your immune system fight bacteria, and giving your body the wrong medicine is not one of them. This isn’t to say we don’t need medicine, but it definitely shouldn’t be part of your everyday routine.

Natural remedies are at the base of all medicine. From your cough syrup to the chemical compounds of your anti-inflammatories—it all started with something natural.

Here are some home remedies for colds, inflammations and immune system boosters like no other;

Ginger

This spicy root sits at the heart of East Asian medicine.

After years of living in Vietnam, ginger has become my go-to when I am starting to feel sick.

It all started when a friend of mine told me how it was used to treat food poisoning in Chinese medicine:

  • Boil two cups of water
  • Add a lump of ginger
  • Boil until the water is equal to one cup
  • Drink

The anti-inflammatory and gingerol medicinal properties reduce the swelling in your stomach caused by the poison, relieving your symptoms. However, the strengths of this concentrate, mean that this is great for just about anything, not just food poisoning.

It’s why, when you are feeling sick, many people in Southeast Asian countries will tell you to drink ginger tea.

It doesn’t stop there though, ginger is known to help with indigestion, heart diseases and even acts as a stress reliever—this is one powerful root!

Chilli and All Things Vitamin C

Turning to orange juice every time that you feel a cold coming on is your body saying that it needs to use your immune system soon. And, that it needs help.

However, oranges are not as loaded with vitamin C as you think…

When measured in milligrams, the amount of vitamin C in bell peppers, kiwi fruit and guava is considerably more than you get from oranges.

To add to the list of superfoods, small chillis, the ones that contain all the fiery heat, are also a strong contender.

If you are a fan of spicy food, eating raw chilis regularly is not only a great way to boost your immune system, it’s also great for joint and muscle pain as a natural, and very strong anti-inflammatory. What’s more, the adrenaline that you experience when you get that fire activates your endorphins too.

Including all of these fruits and vegetables in your diet will contribute your wellness considerably.

Turmeric

Another root to add to your collection! Turmeric is much more than your favourite curry addition.

Turmeric when whole, looks similar to a ginger root, however, its flesh is a vibrant orange! Consuming turmeric regularly can help with digestion, sleep, give you a boost of energy and even brighten up your skin to give you a healthy glow!

Known for its strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory powers, the root, when in its component curcumin, is a stealthy way to improve the health of your heart.

With so much goodness inside of this root, it’s even proven to prevent Alzheimer’s, cancer and symptoms of arthritis. Curcumin is also terrifyingly expensive. This should put you off soaking up the health benefits of turmeric. By opting to buy the root to add to your favourite meals.

Apple Cider Vinegar

I love that you can stay healthy and strong with things that you find in your mum’s cupboard.

I started using apple cider vinegar (ACV) for my hair as the cold does awful things to my scalp. I add in a little tea tree essential oil, dilute it, and put it on to dry before I wash my hair—it’s great!

Little did I know that by drinking apple cider vinegar every day I could be doing myself so much good.

Apple cider vinegar is a great antioxidant, meaning it flushes away the bad things in your body when you consume it regularly.

Taking a spoonful of this every day can help activate digestion and improve skin health through the enzymes and good bacteria that it contains. You can also put it directly onto the area that you want to treat—as long as it is diluted!

The anti-inflammatory properties of ACV can ease symptoms, even for those with chronic conditions.

Lab research (sadly not very ethical) has shown that ACV can contribute to lowering your cholesterol and it can help to reduce sugar level spikes for those with diabetes.

—all from a vinegar!

As the winter draws in, have a look at what’s in your kitchen before you open the medicine cupboard.

By maintaining a healthy diet, filled with nutrients and immune system boosters, you’re equipping yourself with all that you need to keep your body strong. These simple home remedies open the door to a wealth of wholefoods that heal and protect the body!

As the saying goes, ‘let food be thy medicine and medicine by thy food’.